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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/health-protection-report-volume-12-2018/hpr-volume-12-issue-3-news-26-january
Seasonal flu indicators high but stabilising in the UK
Influenza activity in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland appeared to be stabilising during the third week of 2018, according to the PHE’s latest Weekly National Influenza Report [1,2].
In week 3 of 2018, GP consultation rates increased slightly to 54.1 per 100,00 population, (compared with 53.1 the previous week); there were 230 new acute respiratory outbreaks reported (compared with 216 in the previous week); and the rate of influenza-confirmed hospitalisations (based on sentinel surveillance across 22 NHS Trusts in England) was 0.48 per 100,000 population (compared with 0.56 per 100,000 in the previous week). A slideset of charts and tables, illustrating these data trends, is published alongside the weekly report, on the PHE Weekly National Flu Reports webpage 
PHE published provisional data from the third monthly collection of influenza vaccine uptake by frontline healthcare workers showing that 63.9% were vaccinated by 31 December 2017, based on data from 99.6% of all organisations, compared to 61.8% vaccinated in the previous season by 31 December 2016. The report provides uptake at national, NHS local team, “old” area teams and Trust-level. Among Trusts, the highest uptake recorded in the December report was 86.9% and the lowest was 35.7% .
In the population as a whole, 1.5 million additional individuals were vaccinated this season (2017/18) compared to the last season (2016/17).
- PHE (25 January). PHE Weekly National Influenza Report: 25 January 2018 (data up to week 3, ending 21 January 2018).
- “UK flu levels remain high according to PHE statistics” PHE website news story, 25 January.
- PHE (25 January). National flu report surveillance [slideset].
- PHE (25 January). “Seasonal influenza vaccine uptake amongst frontline healthcare workers in England”.
ECDC update on yellow fever resurgence in Brazil
The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) has issued an updated Rapid Risk Assessment for EU/EEA citizens who travel to, or live in, areas at risk of yellow fever in Brazil (and other countries in south America)  taking account of both the recent WHO revision of areas of risk of yellow fever in the country  and the upcoming Carnival mass gatherings in February, when the number of EU/EEA travellers to Brazil is expected to increase.
The ECDC update notes that:
“The 2016/2017 yellow fever outbreak in Brazil was declared over in September 2017, yet the upsurge of human cases since December 2017 and non-human primate epizootics since September 2017 indicate a resurgence of yellow fever virus circulation in Brazil, particularly in São Paulo state.
“The detection of non-human primate cases in the vicinity of the metropolitan regions of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro is of concern, particularly in light of the start of the mosquito activity season in December 2017 and the suboptimal vaccination coverage in some areas. ….”
Although the risk of yellow fever importation to continental EU/EEA is currently very low, the evolution of the epidemic in São Paulo, and reports of a case imported into the EU/EEA from Brazil, has prompted publication of the ECDC update.
Held between 9 and 14 February, the carnival is a major international mass gathering. The number of EU/EEA travellers to the country will increase with a consequent increased risk of travel-related cases arising among unvaccinated travellers.
The National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) has published an advice notice for UK travellers to Carnival  which links to the Country Information Page for Brazil where full and up-to-date information on vaccination recommendations for international travellers, now extending to any part of São Paulo state is available .
- ECDC (18 January 2018). Outbreak of yellow fever outbreak in Brazil: second update.
- WHO (16 January 2018). Updates on yellow fever vaccination recommendations for international travellers related to the current situation in Brazil.
- NaTHNaC website (18 January 2018). Travelling to Carnival?.
- NaTHNaC website (17 January 2018). Yellow fever outbreak Brazil: updated recommendation for Sao Paulo State/City.
Vaccine coverage reports in this issue of HPR
- Vaccine coverage estimates for the school based meningococcal ACWY (MenACWY) adolescent vaccination programme in England, to 31 August 2017
- Vaccine coverage estimates for the school based tetanus, diphtheria and polio (Td/IPV, ‘school leaver booster’) adolescent vaccination programme in England to 31 August 2017
- Preliminary vaccine coverage estimates for the MenB immunisation programme for England, update from August to December 2017